Nuñez suit could turn more banks into targets

September 8, 2019

Evan Stroman takes lead for Miami law firm Kozyak, Tropin & Throckmorton, which represents the plaintiffs, bases its “trafficking” argument on information from a deferred prosecution agreement with the U.S. Department of Justice, where Société Générale admitted that it violated the U.S. embargo against Cuba.

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Mercedes-Benz’s Anti-Whiplash Headrests at Center of Putative Class Action Lawsuit

September 4, 2019

Benjamin Widlanksi and a team of Florida attorneys have launched a putative class action lawsuit against Mercedes-Benz USA LLC, claiming there’s a dangerous defect in hundreds of thousands of cars.

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Litigating Cases with Cultural Competency

By Maia Aron

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Economic Eye On Cuba

August 29, 2019

SEC 10Q Filing By Carnival Corporation For Potential Impact By Libertad Act Lawsuits.

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Expert Q&A on Developing Issues in Blockchain Litigation

August 21, 2019

As blockchain technology becomes a common discussion within global commerce, Daniel Maland and Charles Throckmorton weigh-in to discuss growing issues in Blockchain litigation.

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As Cuba Lawsuits Heat Up, Not All Are Sold on Helms-Burton’s Promise

August 19, 2019

For Attorney Javier Lopez, Helms-Burton Lawsuits on Behalf of Families Whose Property Were Expropriated by the Castro Government, Are More Than Just About Money. They’re Personal.

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Florida Bankruptcy Judge Says Trustee Can Pursue Miami Businessman’s $600M Debt

August 1, 2019

Corali Lopez-Castro represented a bankruptcy trustee in one of the most complicated cases of her career.

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TLFO

David Samole previously led a group of equity interest holders in the Chapter 11 case of TLFO, LLC in successful litigation to re-characterize approximately $23 million of a secured lender’s claim as equity, improving the equity holder distribution by millions of dollars.

SocGen Owes $792M Over Castro-Seized Bank, Heirs Say

July 10,2019

The family of the former owners of a Cuban bank seized by Fidel Castro’s government nearly six decades ago sued Societe Generale for approximately $792 million (£633 million), saying the French bank owes damages for circumventing U.S. sanctions against Cuba.

In a complaint filed on Wednesday with the U.S. District Court in Miami, 14 grandchildren of Carlos and Pura Nuñez, who once owned Banco Nuñez, want to hold Societe Generale liable under U.S. law for doing business with Cuba’s central bank, which nationalized Banco Nuñez and other lenders in 1960.

A lawyer for the plaintiffs said he believed the case was the first against a bank that allegedly “trafficked” in property expropriated by the Castro regime, since the Trump administration said in April it would begin letting U.S. nationals sue companies for such conduct.

“Victims of the Cuban regime who had their property confiscated now have a vehicle to get justice,” Javier Lopez, the lawyer, said in an interview. “We have multiple financial institutions that we’re looking to target.”

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Societe Generale did not immediately respond to requests for comment after market hours.

The lawsuit was filed eight months after Societe Generale agreed to pay $1.34 billion and enter a deferred prosecution agreement to settle U.S. and New York regulatory charges that it handled billions of dollars of transactions related to Cuba and other countries under U.S. sanctions.

According to the plaintiffs, Societe Generale generated hundreds of millions of dollars of fees by lending money to and processing transactions for Banco Nacional de Cuba from 2000 to 2010.

The plaintiffs said they own a claim to 10.5% of the equity in Banco Nacional de Cuba, roughly the percentage that Banco Nuñez represented when it was seized.

Lawyers for the plaintiffs at Kozyak Tropin & Throckmorton based the $792 million damages estimate on Banco Nuñez’s $7.8 million worth at the time, plus 6% annual interest and triple damages under the Helms-Burton Act, a 1996 federal law.

The right to sue under that law had been suspended for 23 years because of opposition from the international community and concern that U.S. courts could be overrun by lawsuits.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced the lifting of that suspension in April, to boost pressure on Havana to end Cuban support for Venezuela’s socialist president, Nicolas Maduro.

The case is Sucesors de Don Carlos Nuñez y Doña Pura Galvez Inc v Societe Generale SA, U.S. District Court, Southern District of Florida, No. 19-22842.

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Legacy Owners of Cuban Bank Sue SocGen Over Sanctions Claims

By Christian Berthelsen

The legacy owners of a nationalized Cuban bank sued to recover losses from Societe Generale SA, which in November settled U.S. charges that the French bank helped Cuba evade American economic sanctions.

The claim is part of a growing body of litigation begun this year after the Trump administration said it would start enforcing a portion of the Helms-Burton Act. The law allows U.S. citizens to seek repayment in court for property confiscated by the Castro regime, which took power in six decades ago. Other companies that have done business with Cuba have also been sued.

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